Creating effective marketing strategies and campaigns as a technology company can occasionally be difficult. It can be challenging to carve out your own space in the busy technology industry or to market software that’s complex and may require a high level of technological know-how.
To help you build your marketing strategy we gathered ideas from other technology companies who have found success. We spoke with seven marketing professionals at tech companies across the world to get their insight.
Create Valuable, Educational Content
“We offer webinars throughout the month for those interested in learning more about Twenty Over Ten and DIY demos for those that are looking to build their own site. Then, at the end of every month, we provide a different type of webinar covering anything from teaching the basics of social media for financial advisors to learning how to drive more leads with inbound marketing to showing people how to create their own webinar. It's a great way to show our value to leads and it continuously helps us to provide value to our current clients, as well.”
Adam Thompson, Director of Digital Marketing at ReliaSite, uses blogging to drive over five million visitors to ReliaSite each year.
He suggests posting regularly, even daily, with blog posts that provide information to solve problems your customers have. “Don’t sell in your blog—focus on providing unadulterated value to the reader,” Adam says. "And include a call-to-action that provides a more in-depth content piece, like an e-book or infographic."
And there’s an added bonus to maintaining a high-quality, high-content blog. Adam adds, “We get a lot of indirect benefit, such as links from other blogs, brand publicity, and press coverage.”
“An explainer video is an effective marketing tool for tech companies that offer complex, sometimes hard-to-understand products or services,” says Hilary Bird, Marketing Manager at Render Pilots. “It's a non-committal way for prospects to quickly understand your offer without having to search through your site or relinquish their email address.”
You can create the video yourself or hire a video professional to create one for you. You can use videos across multiple pages of your website, include a video in blog posts, and share videos across social media. Particularly if you offer technology or services that are complex, a visual explainer video is a great way to showcase your product and share your knowledge. If you’re including a video on a landing page, ensure that it’s above the fold.
“A best practice is to have the video start automatically (but without sound) when a visitor lands on your homepage. This way, it instantly catches their eye but doesn't startle them with loud audio.”
Alex Williams, Founder of Hosting Data UK, has found video to be a powerful social media tool. “Our followers and users engage more with videos above any other form of content.”
Video topics for social media promotion could include product demos, team or client introductions, product reviews, tutorials, or entertaining and funny content. The power of video is that it’s content that can be shared across a variety of platforms. You can limit your video sharing to social media or include the same videos you share across social platforms in your email campaigns, on landing pages, or on your blog.
“At Hosting Data, we make money by earning a small commission any time someone signs up for any of the products or services we review on our site, and so we try to focus on creating super engaging reviews to encourage our users to sign up. It’s all about driving traffic to our site. Technology can often be confusing or hard to understand, and by creating video content that is funny and easy to follow we have greater engagement from our followers.”
Use Marketing Automation
“Automation technology allows marketers to create accurate customer profiles, predict purchasing behaviors, and reach audiences across multiple channels with perfect timing and the right message,” suggests Stuart Derman, Director of Digital Marketing at Epic Marketing.
Start by diving deep into who your audience is, and then automate your customer journeys based on what you learn. “Hyper-personalization and predictive marketing makes technology companies feel more human.”
After gaining the attention and email permission of their audience through white papers and webinars, Lars Skjold Iversen, a Search Engine Explorer at Umbraco, utilizes automated email flows to move towards product promotion. “This usually happens over a series of five or more emails, so we have time to keep giving them valuable content before starting to push any products.”
Once a lead has shown interest in Umbraco’s product, the automation continues to move them towards a free trial and product purchase. “A key feature here is our lead scoring, which we use to gauge the interest of the user. This is based on a lot of factors such as email engagement, as well as website visits and events. If they reach a certain score, we will move to pushing a free trial right away as they've shown interest in our product.”
Share Your Pricing
There is nothing more frustrating for a consumer than when they are looking for a new technology or software and they go to your website thinking you may be a solution, only to find out that they have to schedule a demo in order to find out pricing. Can they afford your solution? Are they wasting their time? Are they wasting your time?
A lot of businesses do this because they are afraid that their competition will find out what they charge and undercut them. Let's be honest - if someone wanted to find that information out, they could. You're not hurting your competition by hiding your pricing, you're hurting your website visitors and prospects. Be transparent and you'll close more business.
Content for All Stages of the Funnel
Technology companies fall into the bad habit of only caring about the bottom of the funnel, the people that are ready to start a trial, schedule a demo, or purchase your solution. Those people are important - even the most important, but they aren't the only people to think about. Consumers get to the bottom of the funnel by researching their problem and potential solutions. They don't just wake up one morning and think, "hey I need to buy a software today." Creating content for buyers at all stages of the funnel - awareness (just realizing that they have a problem), consideration (deciding on a solution to solve their problem), and decision (deciding on a vendor) - gives your visitors what they're looking for, regardless of where they are at that moment in the funnel. It also gives you the opportunity to nurture a top or middle of the funnel buyer into a bottom of the funnel buyer. Take the time to create content such as blog posts, high value content, videos, and social media content that speaks to those top and middle of the funnel prospects - they'll remember that you did and trust you more than your competitor that was just focused on selling.
Don’t Waste Your Time
With seemingly endless marketing tools and strategies out there, it can be tempting to throw everything at the wall and see what sticks. “Not all marketing techniques work for everyone, or every company—no matter how cool the product is. Always research the industry and get to know your client,” suggests Ashley Sterling, Director of Operations at The Loop Marketing.
A big part of your marketing strategy is knowing why your customers are interested in your product or services. As you get to know your customer through buyer personas and analytics you’ll be able to focus your attention on the channels that work best for you.
“By getting in front of the right audience and using the right tools, you'll save hours of effort and end up more successful.”
Developing an effective marketing strategy for your technology company can be challenging, but there are tried and true methods that can help contribute to your success. Consider putting some of the suggestions above into practice. If you're looking for a more comprehensive and personalized take on marketing strategies for your business, let's chat.